Things to see and do in Montreux

 

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MontreuxThe town of Montreux is nestled in a sheltered Lake Geneva bay, against the breath-taking backdrop of snow-covered Alps, surrounded by vineyards.

The long, flower-bordered lake promenade links Vevey and Montreux, running all the way to Chillon Castle – perfect for an afternoon stroll! Historic houses such as the magnificent Fairmont Le Montreux Palace, dating from the heyday of the Belle Époque era, accompany the road along the lake.  Cultural events, such as the Montreux Jazz Festival, as well as countless excursion options to the surrounding mountains or across the lake make Montreux one of the most popular holiday destinations in Switzerland.

Highlights include:

  • Audiorama - located between Montreux and Chillon Castle, the museum of audio-visual objects contains exhibits ranging from the first recording mechanisms through to digital televisions.
  • Rochers-de-Naye - the Rochers-de-Naye rack-railway, after overcoming a difference in altitude of 1600 metres, reaches one of the most beautiful vantage points in western Switzerland.
  • Golden Pass Line - the panoramic train operates between Montreux, Gstaad and the Bernese Oberland with connections to Lucerne.
  • Lake Geneva Shipping Company - the ships, including old paddle steamers, take visitors to the picturesque lakeside resorts.
  • Chillon Castle - located on a rocky island near the shore featuring fortified walls and towers; the prison in which Bonivard was held in chains for four years and which provided Lord Byron with the inspiration for his famous poem "The Prisoners of Chillon",- in 1816, deserves particular attention. Nowadays the castle is a museum.

Summer

MontreuxThe lake is ideal for bathing, water sports or a cruise. And along the lake promenade piano and jazz bars, discos and Switzerland's oldest casino mingle with hotels and restaurants.

A rack-railway provides transport from Montreux up the Rochers-de-Naye at an altitude of 2042 metres above sea level where visitors are treated to a stunning view of Lake Geneva and the Savoy, Vaud, Valais and Bernese Alps. The Rochers-de-Naye is a starting point for hikes as well as take-off area for para- and hang gliders. The Golden Pass among other things takes its passengers to the vineyards above the town with their walking and cycling trails, the Vaud mountains of the Pays-d'Enhaut and on to the Bernese Oberland, i.e. to Gstaad.

Winter

Rochers de NayeThe Rochers-de-Naye and family-friendly ski regions of Les Avants and Les Pléiades cater for winter sports enthusiasts and winter walkers. For example the 2.3 kilometre-long toboggan run in Les Avant offers fast toboggan descents. In December one of the most beautiful Christmas Markets in Switzerland is located in the Grand-Rue, market hall and along the lake.

Read about travel writer Gillian Thornton’s short break in Montreux


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